In Tom Stoppard’s play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, the titular characters Rosencrantz (Ros) and Guildenstern (Guil) experience what Palestinian American literary theorist and cultural critic Edward Said termed an “unhealable rift.” Ros and Guil struggle through the play over the dichotomy between reality and illusion, never quite coming to understand the difference therein. They experience an exile of essence, an irreconcilable schism between existence and identity: their lack of purpose degrades them to mere pawns whose absurd, tragic end arrives despite any attempt to subvert fate.